Grace's Guide is the leading source of historical information on industry and manufacturing in Britain. This web publication contains 147,169 pages of information and 233,410 images on early companies, their products and the people who designed and built them.
of Nelson, Lancs
1886 'OPENING OF PENDLE-STREET SHED, NELSON. A very pleasing ceremony took place on Saturday afternoon, when the new shed erected in Pendle-street, Nelson, was formally opened, and the two engines were christened Miss Nellie and Miss Isabel Astley, daughters of Mr. Astley, chairman of the directors. The company assembled shortly before three o'clock, and while preparations were being made start the engines the ladies and gentlemen inspected the large piece of machinery. Amongst those present we noticed Mr. Astley (chairman of the company), Misses Astley, Mrs. and Miss Roberts, Alderman Greenwood (Burnley/, Miss Robinson, Mr. Rushworth, Mr. T. Stutt, Mr. F. Hartley, Mrs. Schofield, Mr. M. Collinge, Mr, J. Grimsbaw (Barrowford), Mr. T. Robinson (Nelson), Mr. T. Bell (architect), Mr. Roberts, Mr. W. Hartley, Mr. J. H. Edmondson, Mr. and Mrs. Edmondson, Mr. S. Watson, and others.— Mr. Edmondson said was pleased to see so many present, and called upon Mr. Astley to make a few explanatory remarks. —Mr. Astley, who was well received, said felt highly honoured being asked by the directors to allow his two daughters christen the engines. It was two years that month since it was thought desirable that company should be formed. At first was not the intention of the company to build so large a shed, but only provide accommodation for 1,500 looms, but was eventually decided to enlarge it so that would contain 2,500 looms. Some people thought they were doing wrong in erecting such a large shed, and said it was not necessary but the directors were determined to make that shed one of the best and most modern Lmcashire. He was pleased that during the erection of the place there had not been a single accident to his knowledge.— Miss Isabel .and Miss Nellie Astley then, in a most graceful manner, christened the engines " Isabel" and " Nellie" amidst the applause of all present. Shortly afterwards Mr. Roberts escorted Miss Bertha Astley the engines and assisted her in them. When the flywheel commenced to revolve there was an outburst of applause. During the ceremony Mr. Roberts gave the following description ot the engines : The engines are a pair of horizontal engines on the compound principle, working high and low pressure, 6 feet stroke, working fifty revolutions per minute, thus having a piston speed of 600 feet per minute, and are capable of driving over 750 indicated horse power. The high pressure cylinder is 24 1/2 diameter, and the low pressure cylinder 46 inches diameter. The pistons are fit up with Buckley's patent packings. The high pressure cylinder is fitted with slide valves, working horizontal and automatic cut-off valves, working vertical on an improved principle, by Roberts & Co., Nelson. The low pressure cylinder has double slide valves, with extra wide ports. Both cylinders are fitted with hollow covers filled in with nonconducting cement and covered with polished casings to prevent radiation. The piston rods are 5 1/2 inches diamater, made from Seimen and Martin's mild steel. The crossheads or sockets are made from crucible cast steel, and are polished throughout. The connecting rods are 17 feet long, and are made from the best faggoted scrap iron and polished throughout, and are fitted with phosphor-bronze steps and screw gibs and cotters. The ends that couple to the crank pins are solid, and the ends that couple to crossheads fitted with polished strap, screw gibs and cotters and bolt. The cranks are made from the best forge-iron, polished throughout, and weigh over 30 cwts. each. The crank pins are made frcm Sir Joseph Whitworth's fluid compressed steel; and are 7 inches diameter in the necks. The fly-wheel shaft is made from Sir Joseph Whitworth's fluid compressed steel, and is 13 inches diameter in the necks, 15 inches diameter in the body, and 17 inches diameter on the swell. The fly-shaft pedestals are diagonal shaped, and fitted with phosphor-bronze steps. The fly-wheel is put together with 1 boss, 10 arms, 10 felks, and 10 steel segments—the felks or outer rim being turned and polished, and 18 feet diameter. The segments are made from cast steel, and are feet diameter, 14 1/2 inches broad, and 4 3/8 inches pitch, with double helical teeth. They are bored out, and the arm ends turned to fit them. The weight of the fly-wheel without the shaft is nearly 50 tons. The second motion wheel is made from cast steel, 5 feet 10 inches diameter, 14 inches broad, and 4 3/8 inches pitch, with double helical teeth. The second motion shaft is made from Sir Joseph Whitworth's fluid compressed steel. The necks are 9 inches diameter, and inches long, The diameter on the body of shaft is 11 inches, and the swell 12 inches diameter. The pedestals are diagonal shaped, and are fitted with phosphor bronze steps. frames or bed plates are box-shaped, and bolted to the stonework with bolts, and planed to receive second motion and fly-shaft pedestals, slides, and cylinders. The total weight of frames is 42 tons. The air pump is vertical, and worked from the engine crosshead with strong L levers made from Seimen &• Martin's mild steel. The governor is on the pendulum principle, and coupled to the automatic cut-off valves, equilibrium valve, and safety-trap motion (for stopping the engine case of either fast or slow speeds).
In a most humorous speech, Mr. H. Watson proposed a vote of thanks to Mr. Astley and his daughters, which was seconded by Mr. T. Bell (Burnley), the architect, who mentioned that Mr. Astley had spent considerable time at the works, and had rendered him valuable assistance. — The vote was passed in a most cordial manner, and the company broke up. Through the courtesy of Mr. Bell, we are enabled to give the following description of the shed: — It is situated on the westerly side of the Leeds and Liverpool Canal, on which abuts. The whole site belonging to the company contains between five and six acres. Of this about 17,540 superficial yards, or nearly 3 3/4 acres, are devoted to the sheds, warehouses, enginehouse, boiler-house, and outbuildings, and yards. The remainder is proposed to be used for the erection of dwelling-houses, and will contain from 30 to 40 houses. The premises are designed to contain about 2,400 looms, with all the necessary warehousing, yards, &c, complete. It is based on the principle of sub-division into seven portions for separate lettings, each complete itself. In order to gain a central position for the enginehouse, for the most direct transmission power, and yet keeping the boiler-house as near the canal as possible, three separate sheds have been designed, two on the westerly side and one on the easterly side, which principle is favoured by the shape of the land. Between the two westerly sheds the head gearing passage has been formed, which is continued on the southerly side of the third shed, and in this passage the main shaft and all connecting bevel wheels for the cross shafts are placed. This gearing passage is a special feature in the arrangements, and, as far as know, unique in the district. It has the advantage keeping all the main driving wheels separate from the sheds, considerably reducing the noise in the building, also keeping the mam quantity of oil out of the places where weaving going on, and having separate entrances from the enginehouse the wheels can be attended to without the oiler going into the sheds at all. The view of the shafting and bevel wheels from the engine house down the gearing passage is certainly one of the sights of Nelson. The passage is well lighted with a row of toplights its whole length. is heated by steam pipes which supply the tapes the warehouses, and has row 3 of girders, one for a gangway for access to the wheels, and the other for lifting blocks to facilitate any repairs or disconnection of the shafts. The south-westerly shed contains 1,100 looms, and is arranged so as to be divided into three portions if desired, each with separate conveniences for males and females. It is lofty, being 11 feet from the floor to the centre of the shaft, which is well lighted, having an extra length of glass. It is also well ventilated from the toplights, which can opened from the floor or left closed as required. The toplights have also an almost northerly aspect, which is a considerable advantage. The floor is fligged; the alleys with hard rock from Rossendale, those under the looms with porous flags from Catlow. There are also recesses the main walls for tacklers' benches. is at present built two portions, and each will be separately lighted warmed. On the westerly side is the warehousing, which is ample, being about four superficial yards per loom. The cellar has a brick paved floor, the ground floor is fitted up with offices and stores. The first floor will be used for the winding and warping, and the second floor is utilised for the taping, which is partitioned. The rooms are lofty and well lighted. The north-westerly shed will contain 750 looms, and is arranged for the tenants upon exactly the same lines as that previously described, and has the same proportion of warehousing. On the westerlyside of both these warehouses, which are together 330 feet long, there is a yard 42 feet wide in which are stparate oily waste buildings which minimise the insurance premium. The third shed is on the easterly side, and will contain 570 looms with warehouseing to the canal side on'the same basis as before. It has a separate yard and entrance gate from Pendle-street. The engine house is feet 28 feet inches, and is lofty and well lighted the roof ia open boarded and varnished. The boiler house is 60 feet by 31 feet 6 inches, and is placed adjoining the engine house. Beyond the boiler house therea is a mechanic's shop and store room, and also director's office. The whole number of shafts in the work is about 520, with 95 wheels and 1,700 drums. The whole of the buildings are of the most substantial character, the external walls facing aud the yards are faced with coarse stones. When completed this building will form one the largest, most commodious and perfect weaving premises Lancashire.
The names of the contractors were as follows:— Excavator, Mr. A. Robinson, Nelson joiner's work, Mr. A. Robinson, Padiham; slating, Mr. W. Stanworth, Burnley; plastering, Mr. J. Butler, Nelson; painting, Mr. T. D. Radcliffe, Burnley; plumbing, &c, Messrs. Dole, Nelson; engine, Messrs. Roberts, Nelson; millwright, Messrs. Rushworth, Colne ; ironwork, Messrs. Roberts, Nelson; boilers, Messrs. Farniough, Stalybridge ; economiser, Mr E. Green and Son, Wakefield; heating, Mr. Walton, Burnley. The Clerk of Works is Mr. J. Marslem. The work has been designed and carried out under the inspection Mr. T. Bell, architect, Nelson. 
1891 Directory: Listed. More details